Did you catch the emphasis on NEVER there? I don’t care if we’re talking about Sodom and Gomorrah or the separating of the sheep and the goats, Judgment is not the point. Judgment happens, and punishment is handed out but judgment is never the goal or the reason, the goal or the center point behind it all.
I heard on the radio the other day that God came down to the tower of Babel just like with Sodom and Gomorrah to pronounce judgment over them. It wasn’t that God needed to see the iniquities of man for himself, after all, he has the whole omnipresent/omniscience thing going on. So why did he show up in person? According to the radio it was because the Judge must be present to hand out judgment. That God loves us enough to do it himself to our face, rather than send an intermediary.
Excuse my language for a moment but I think that’s a load of crap.
God doesn’t show up because you can’t have an execution if the executioner isn’t holding the ax. That is most certainly not the case. Rather it is his hope that such a dramatic display will reveal his character and his desire for his children like it did for Isaiah. The prophet enters the throne room and immediately repents of all evil he had done.
It’s his KINDNESS that leads us to repentance not fear of his judgment.
The good news is that we are in a position in the New Testament Church to see such dramatic displays bring people to repentance and into relationship with God on a daily basis. Everytime we come up to someone who doesn’t have a personal relationship with God, Christ in us just itches to show up and pour out his love.
The bad news is, it’s Christ in us. How many times have we interpreted that itch to show up and be kind and loving for an itch to be judgmental?
For my part, the answer is too many times.